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"I had a lot of support from Maxima, and the fact that I was challenged by the training was actually a good thing for me.”

Kirralee Burner is making a big impression at NAB, where she began a traineeship in December 2016 through Maxima’s Indigenous Employment Program.

After finishing high school in 2015, the 19-year-old took a gap year to think about what she wanted for the future, including whether to go on to university.

Towards the end of last year, a friend told Kirralee about Maxima’s Indigenous training and employment programs. A meeting with Maxima was arranged and Kirralee was soon convinced that a traineeship in banking would be right for her.

Kirralee’s Employment Consultant and Mentor, Tina Pelucchi, says it was clear from the start that Kirralee would be a great asset for any employer.

“She’s very motivated and energetic, and just a terrific young woman.”

Tina approached NAB, which has partnered with Maxima for a number of years to achieve their Indigenous employment targets, and urged them to take on Kirralee in a 12-month traineeship.

An opening was found at one of NAB’s city branches in Adelaide. Less than 12 months later, Kirralee says working at NAB is the best thing she has ever done, while her manager, Robert Cardone, says he can’t praise her enough.

“Kirralee has already completed the study component of her traineeship in just eight months, and at a level above what we normally expect. After 12 months, trainees normally go into the position of teller, but Kirralee is already learning the ropes of being a credit card or personal loans specialist. I can’t speak highly enough of her.”

Kirralee says she was worried at the start about getting back into the habit of studying and a bit daunted by how much there was to learn.

“But I had a lot of support from Maxima, and the fact that I was challenged by the training was actually a good thing for me.”

Completing her studies means Kirralee has already achieved her (BSB30115) Certificate III in Business, and could be in line for new positions at NAB before the end of her traineeship. She has ambition, too.

“I do like retail banking, but my goal is to make my way into management in areas such as business banking or private banking. But right now, I am busy just trying to learn everything!”